The casting news for ‘Iron Man 3’ has just gotten more stellar! Just on the heels of announcing that Guy Pearce is to play geneticist Aldrich Killian, now comes word that Oscar nominee Jessica Chastain is talks to also star in the film.

Chastain was very busy in 2011 starring in 6 films, 2 of which were nominated for an Oscar in the Best Picture category: ‘The Tree of Life’ and ‘The Help’. According to Deadline, she will be playing a smart and sexy scientist who will intellectually spar with Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr). The name of the character wasn’t revealed but some think she could be playing Maya Hansen, the scientist who helped Aldrich Killian (Pearce) develop the nanotechnology called ‘Extremis.’

Chastain was originally offered the role but due to scheduling conflicts had to turn it down. At the time she had already signed on to star in the Kathryn Bigelow movie about the hunt for Osama Bin Laden and was slated to film ‘The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby’ about the same time of ‘Iron Man 3’. So Marvel went looking for other actresses to fill her spot. Some of the actresses that audictioned for the part included Diane Kruger (‘The Host’, ‘National Treasure: Book of Secrets’, ‘Inglorious Bastards’), Gemma Arterton (‘Quantum of Solace’, ‘Clash of the Titans’), and Isla Fisher (‘Rise of the Guardians’, ‘Confessions of a Shopaholic’).

Now it looks like Chastain’s schedule has been cleared up and she is now available to take on ‘Iron Man 3’. If negotiations go well, Chastain will be joining Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Sir Ben Kingsley, and Guy Pearce. Shane Black (‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang’, ‘The Monster Squad’, ‘Lethal Weapon’), who co-wrote the screenplay with Drew Pearce (‘How Not to Live Your Life’, ‘No Heroics’) will direct.

Filming is slated to begin sometime next month in Wilmington, North Carolina with a release date of May 3, 2013.